Helping build better communities

I have worked hard as your senator to help strengthen our economy by concentrating on fiscal sustainability and business growth and by reinforcing education through STEM and career technologies.

While we have much to do, I’m proud of what we’ve achieved for Lenawee and Monroe counties. In this column, I’ll highlight some support we delivered for Lenawee County. I’ll highlight the Monroe County support in a later column.

As a strong advocate for investing in in­frastructure, I was able to secure over $100 million in direct investments to Lenawee County that included job training, road and downtown improvements, business incubators, and blight elimination through housing, sewer and wastewater projects and drinking water initiatives.

Matching private investments provided an additional $25 million and 400 new jobs.

We helped recruit PlaneWave Instruments to relocate from California to Adrian to manufacture high-end telescopes, supported a $22 million economic development grant for Morenci to help provide job training for a KAMCO Industries expansion project, and secured a $32 million grant for an Inteva plant expansion to support new automotive technologies.

Lenawee Now received a $190,000 grant for a business incubator program in the new Adrian/Tecumseh SmartZone, which also was awarded an $80,000 grant through the competitive Michigan Build Ready Sites Program.

The city of Adrian was selected to participate in the Michigan Main Street Program, received a $1.45 million grant for renovations to six downtown buildings, and earned a $2.9 million grant for blight elimination, historic preservation and rental rehabilitation at the Strongback Four Corners Redevelopment project downtown.

Tecumseh got a $1 million grant and a $1 million loan to address brownfield conditions at the former Tecumseh Products facility, where the company is mediating contaminated soil and groundwater. The $25 million project will convert the 55-acre site into a useable open space.

Roads are critical to our economy and daily life. Lenawee County received $5.5 million to create a 9.7-mile primary route between M-52 and US-223 and a $375,000 grant for work on the Tecumseh-Clinton Highway. Tecumseh got a $369,234 grant for work on South Evans Street, Morenci and Cement City were awarded small-town road funding grants, and Adrian got a $7 million grant to build a pedestrian tunnel under M-52.

The city of Hudson received a $5.2 million low-interest loan for improvements to the city’s wastewater treatment plant and collection system, and Tecumseh got a $1.76 million low-interest loan for the rehabilitation of its sanitary sewer and the replacement of an electrical transformer and a pump station.

We also secured a $2 million infrastructure grant for Morenci to reconstruct water and sanitary sewer mains, resurface three streets, and complete a rebuild of a lift station and iron removal filter system.

To increase the enjoyment of our great outdoors, I helped secure a $300,000 grant toward the Kiwanis Trail project to connect Adrian and Tecumseh with 7.7 miles of paved, dedicated trail.

Education is critical to our future, and I was proud to serve on the Michigan STEM Advisory Council, secure a $76,000 grant to purchase a CNC plasma cutting system for Lenawee ISD student training, spearhead a group of K-12 teachers and administrators to develop a program to provide remedial math opportunities, and work with Madison and Hudson schools to secure state construction permits to build a stadium press box.

Law enforcement officers, firefighters and EMTs are our first responders and must have the tools, training and support to protect our communities. I was successful in implementing laws to protect our first responders, including passing Public Act 349 of 2018 to update the Move Over Law and PA 203 of 2015 dealing with firefighter certification reciprocity with other states.

I also supported the creation of the First Responder Presumed Coverage Fund for firefighter work-related cancer treatment, secured funding for additional state police at Michigan International Speedway events, and passed measures to dedicate memorial highways in honor of State Troopers Roger Adams and Calvin Jones.

These are just a fraction of the efforts we have made over the last seven years. The governor recently signed a $4.7 billion infrastructure supplemental that will also add to these achievements.

As we work to pass a budget for next year, I will continue to focus on investments that help improve our communities and our state for years to come.

For a more detailed report, contact my office at (517) 373-3543 or via e-mail at [email protected].